Jaca Family Cattle Ranch

Idaho

Elias Jaca, of Western Idaho, is a cattle rancher for Niman Ranch.

How many generations in your family are ranchers?

Six.

How many family members are involved in your ranch?

My wife, Inez, our son Martin and his wife, Susan, and their four children.

How many cattle are on your ranch?

Our herd is approximately 2,000 head.

What crops are produced on your ranch?

Our cattle are raised on more than 80,000 acres of federal, state and private land. They graze on the grasses. We also raise the feed for our cattle for the winter pastures.

What’s the history of your family’s operation?

Inez and I are both fourth-generation ranchers and descendants of immigrants from the Basque region of Europe. In 1965, we began cattle ranching on my father’s property. I’ve been ranching for more than 55 years.

What sustainable farming practices are a part of your ranch?

We practice crop rotation to ensure proper land management and each summer drive our cattle to mountain feeding grounds, allowing the winter pastures to rest. We take care of the land, so it takes care of us.

How long have you sold cattle to Niman Ranch?

Since 2006.

"We take care of the land so it takes care of us."

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